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New London says no to ATVs, UTVs on streets

City officials’ main concern is noise

By Scott Bellile

The New London Board of Public Works will not consider legalizing of off-road vehicles on city streets.

Public Services Director Chad Hoerth sought the board’s opinion on the matter June 3, saying several residents have asked to ride all-terrain vehicles and side-by-sides on roads.

“One of the concerns in New London that would have to be considered is, just to get from the south side of town to the north side of town, Shawano Street is the only street to get through there,” Hoerth said. “Do you want to allow (ATVs and UTVs) on Shawano Street? Probably not.”

Municipalities throughout Waupaca County that have legalized ATVs and UTVs on roads include the towns of Dayton, Iola, Matteson, Harrison and Wyoming and the city of Weyauwega.

New London Police Chief Jeff Schlueter told the board those rural towns tend to have houses situated farther from the roadway, whereas in the city of New London, ATVs and UTVs would be passing by closer to homes.

“I do believe one of our biggest complaints would be just the noise that you would deal with in here in town,” Schlueter said, adding he receives plenty of noise complaints for disruptive cars and trucks.

Mayor Gary Henke said he did not believe the possibility for more complaints would be good use of police officers’ time.

Schlueter said there are currently no trail systems that connect to the city.

“In town I think that’d be an awful mess,” Second District Alderman Fred Zaug said.

New London’s city ordinances allow ATVs and UTVs on streets in the wintertime but only for the purpose of snowplowing, Schlueter said.

The board of public works agreed with city officials’ reservations and declined to place the topic on a future meeting agenda. The board will not meet in July.

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